Make a fool of yourself.
Spill red wine on a white sweater,
walk into a stranger’s apartment,
ask out a married woman,
sing off-key until your throat burns.
Speak uninvited at a wedding
and interrupt a church service.
Tongue-kiss your boss
and try to steal her dog.
in front of the mirror,
in front of your mother,
in front of a giant crowd.
Humiliate yourself until you’ve destroyed
image of yourself.
& get up again.
When you’re done,
naked, starving and shivering
in front of the people you once
This is vulnerability:
You’ve stripped away everything
and failed so spectacularly
that you will now try anything.
that no one can do anything to you
that you haven’t already done to yourself—
in fact, you’ve probably done worse.
What will you have
to show for it?
A wine-stained sweater,
a stolen dog,
and a delicious,
inexplicable sense of freedom.
Write it down.